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Swamp of locusts reinvades Eastern Equatoria state

By Elijah Akuei Ajou Ajou

The government through the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security says another swamp of desert locusts has invaded Eastern Equatoria State.

Josephine Lagu Yanga, the Minister of Agriculture and Food Security confirmed the invasion. She said Kapoeta County is affected by the swamp of desert locusts.

“This is now the fourth time we have the locusts invaded Eastern Equatoria State. The locusts are not affecting only South Sudan but also the entire East African countries. It is the common problem in the region,” Minister Josephine told Juba Monitor in a telephone interview yesterday.

“I can say the Ministry and FOA have prepared for this locust invasion, last month when it happened in Eastern Equatoria, in Kapoeta in particular our ground teams were monitoring and they were surveillance and last weekend when the locust came back, our ground team was ready from it,” she added.

The locust invaded the area for the last two months of May and July of this year

In her part, National Plant Protection Specialist for United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization Mr. Moris Filex Juma said this month we have already experienced two invasions of the locusts, especially in Kapoeta area and some parts of lake Turkana from Kenya to Kapoeta on 19 of August.

“We managed to undertake Action to manage around 250 hectors by that time and the situation has come down and there were no more locusts in the area but currently two days back there was another invasion and our taskforce is working hard since that day until yesterday and today,” Filex said.

“Currently we are using the swarm control at least when the swarm is settled big area and may need aerial intervention, we have ready with the contact of Desert Locust Control organization DLCO and they are staying in Morocco and they are ready any time upon request from our side, they can come to help us with control measures,” he added..

The Locusts originated from middle East and came through the Red Sea Channel and it is the wind that blew them and bring them this side, this locusts are powerful and they can travel in thousands of Milles that is why they are able to arrive here and then when they settled, they lay eggs, what we have right now is the third generation of the locusts.

Locusts are migratory insects, normally they can stay for few hours and they move away.

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